Getting help to the ‘forgotten community’

A community association has been able to feed hundreds of vulnerable people in parts of Liverpool who were told to shield during Covid-19.

The Dovecot and Princess Drive Community Association were awarded £5,000 by the Steve Morgan Foundation Covid-19 Emergency Fund 

The grant has been entirely used to support the many elderly and disabled members of the community who, due to their shielding status and/or loss of income during Covid-19, have required food parcels to feed themselves and their families. 

Dovecot and Princess Drive Community Association obtained referrals from local councillors in the Dovecot and Knotty Ash wards and have worked closely with a larger regional charity, The Big Help Project, to source the food provided. 

Trustee Joseph Goulding said: “Funding from the Steve Morgan Foundation has been instrumental in allowing the Dovecot and Princess Drive to grow and meet the increased need in the aftermath of Covid-19. 

“The funding awarded has allowed us to ringfence finances to the purchasing of much-needed food items and in turn has enabled us to free up cash reserves to employ a community liaison co-ordinator on an initial six month contract who’ll enable us to continue to meet the needs of our community as they evolve from a need for food to a need for financial inclusion support, debt advice and welfare support.

“The project has made an enormous benefit to Dovecot and Knotty Ash. Given the demographic make-up of our beneficiaries and our geographical location on the outskirts of West Derby and Croxteth, we often believe we are a forgotten community in inner Liverpool. 

“The funding awarded has ensured that these people know they are not forgotten. The project has ensured these people are fed and can look forward to a welfare call every other day. The project has strengthened the community by both supporting clients known to us and new clients who wouldn’t usually be in our cohort.”

The association has helped a total of 486 people, 213 of whom required food to be delivered to their door due to the fact they were shielding or having to self isolate. 

Joseph said: “At first the majority of our referrals were due to shielding status, but as lockdown has continued we have an increasing number of referrals for food support due to clients experiencing a near total loss of earnings or prolonged wait for Universal Credit income.”

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